One lane of Highway 133 near Paonia Reservoir open, but expect long delays

By Real Aspen
May 9, 2013

State Highway 133 opened to single-lane, alternating traffic just after 5 p.m., on Wednesday as Colorado Department of Transportation rockfall contractor Yenter Companies completed the necessary rock scaling at the rockfall site at mile point 29, just north of Paonia Reservoir.

This work is in response to a rockfall incident that happened on Sunday, May 5.

Crews will continue work (likely all day Thursday) on drilling the large rocks on the roadway in preparation for blasting (this is an estimated schedule of work). Rocks will be broken up into pieces that can be hauled away in some 100-plus dump truck loads. With good progress and good weather, it is possible—but NOT a certainty—that the road could be fully open on Friday (updates are posted at

A rockfall near Paonia Reservoir on Highway 133 (CDOT photo).

Work is under way each day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.—during these hours (possibly through Friday, May 10), motorists will encounter single-lane, alternating traffic and possibly up to two-hour delays. Delays are due to 1) a large drill rig that is set up the free lane and requires time to move on and off the site; and 2) blasting operations and subsequent loading and hauling away. At night, from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., motorists will simply encounter a continuous flow of single-lane, alternating traffic (with minimal delays).

The closure barricades are at MP 28 on the south side and MP 29.5 on the north. Motorists from the south attempting to get from Paonia to Carbondale, Glenwood or Aspen will need to detour onto SH 92, SH 65, I-70 and the SH 82 - a detour of about 140 miles. (Motorists from the north will use this detour in reverse). CDOT will post updates on this closure at (see “Travel Alerts”).

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